Buddhist Nirvana — Its Significance in Contemporary Thought and Life

  • Masao Abe
  • William R. LaFleur
Part of the Library of Philosophy and Religion book series (LPR)


Nirvana is generally regarded as the goal of the Buddhist life, in that it is essential for Buddhists to enter nirvana. Nirvana has been compared with the Christian notion of the Kingdom of God. In the West, however, it is often misunderstood as something negative. This misunderstanding even occurs in the Buddhist world, for the literal meaning of nirvana is the extinction or annihilation of passion, often compared to the extinguishing of a fire. But is nirvana negative? What is the real meaning of entering nirvana?


Human Existence True Community Contemporary Thought Total Realization Endless Process 
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Copyright information

© Masao Abe and William R. LaFleur 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masao Abe
    • 1
  • William R. LaFleur
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of HawaiiUSA
  2. 2.University of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA

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